Back-to-back Lachat August 4 & 5...first P&Z, then Conservation
JULY MEETINGS TO BE ATTENDED BY LWV OF WESTON OBSERVER CORPS: NOTE THAT SPECIAL MEETINGS COME AT ANY TIME SO LONG AS THERE IS 24-hr NOTICE Week of July 19-23 Conservation Commission Thursday July 22, 2021 at 7:33pm - 9:45pm - report here.
P&Z Special Meeting Wednesday July 21, 2021 at 7:15pm on Zoom. Link to agenda here.
P&Z Special Monday July 19, 2021 at 6pm on Zoom. Link to agenda here. GREAT MEETING - only an hour - watch it when you can in re-run. More here.
Week of July 12-16 Board of Selectmen Thursday July 15, 2021 - long meeting - play-by-play here.
Lachat Town Farm Commission Thursday July 15, 2021 at 7:30 on Zoom - https://www.westonct.gov/home/showpublisheddocument/5661/637611648471400000
Economic Vitality Commission Special (?) Wednesday July 14, 2021 at 8pm
on Zoom - agenda included item on report to Selectmen - seeks permission
to send out home business survey. Marketing & Communication
Committee on Zoom at 7:30pm Monday (Special) July 12, 2021.
Didn't get on as we got a message "incorrect something-or-other" -
did meeting take place?
Week of July 5-9 SPECIAL BOARD OF FINANCE Thursday July 8, 2021 - AGENDA here. More than 2 hours - did a lot - link here: https://www.aboutweston.com/financeboard.html#meetingnotes
P&Z TUESDAY JULY 6, 2021 at 7:15pm onZOOM - We
attended full P&Z meeting - approved Affordable Housing Plan
unanimously, received new application for "Gateway" to Weston zone - PH
set for Sept 8, 2021. Discussed Cannabis legalization as it
relates to action by P&Z.
POLICE COMMISSIONon Zoom at 7pm Tuesday 7-6-21-
tuned in @ 8pm - We watched item #6 only - the Police Department Policy
#A0007 – “Complaints that Allege Misconduct by Police Officer.”
It came just before they went into Executive Session. One included item to be discussed - "union contract."
Week of June 28-July 2 Board of Selectmen at 7:30pm Thursday July 1, 2021 on Zoom...full report here.
Board of Ethics June 30, 2021 NEW: We
are watching this on July 19, 2021. Process of complaints
discussion. Including the Board of Education - does this mean
members or employees? Technically State entity - no authority over
Board or staff. CONFLICT OF INTEREST claims.
Economic Vitality Committee, Special Meeting at 8pm Wednesday June 30,
2021 on Zoom...noted success at Grange for various community-wide
get-togethers, formation of various projects to reach those living and
working at home.
Conservation Commission Special Meeting 6-30-21 (Wednesday) Lachat...post-poned.
P&Z 6-28-21 at 7:15pm continuation of 8-24 of Lachat - CANCELED
Week of June 21-25 Building Committee Special at 7pm June 24, 2-21 - agenda is loaded
with projects that, in my mind, relate to air quality issues related to
COVID-eligible funding (I hope I'm correct)...as it turns out, probably not.
Planning & Zoning Special at 7pm June 21, 2021 - review page by page
draft Affordable Housing Plan - Final version at July 6th P&Z
Week of June 14-18 Economic Vitality Committee 6-16-21 at 8pm. Moving ahead!!!
Conservation Special Meeting 6-15-21 at 7:30pm (Tuesday) Lachat. Facilities Optimization Committee Tuesday at 7pm - we note that the Selectmen approved a $10k special
appropriation which now goes to the Board of Finance...which has not met on it yet...CANCELLED.
Sustainable Weston Committee Special 6-14-21 at 6:30pm. AGENDA & ORGANIZATION AWESOME!!!
FYI - it is wet today - nice rain! Monday meetings will be with
student interns under arrangement with discussion leader from
Hartford. Will will be attending if no other meetings conflict
(and it is assured that this group will be meeting on Zoom).
Week of June 7-11 Board of Finance Thursday 6-10-21 at 6:30pm - CANCELLED P&Z - Monday 6-7-21 at 7:15pm - the last Zoom meeting for
P&Z? Nope - continuation of 8-24 report on Lachat proposal to
Monday June 28, 2021 at 7:15pm - the last Zoom for P&Z???
Week of June 2-5 (Monday was a holiday) Board of Selectmen Thursday June 4, 2021 - Valley Forge
Day just before WPS opens - maybe more times during summer, work to do
to figure this out; WOOF WOOF dog park closer to reality!
Police Commission Tuesday June 1, 2021 - 7pm to after 8:30pm.
Clearly there will be problems ahead - perhaps caused by secretive
appearance of PC meetings agenda formats. "Executive Session"
rules to discuss whatever do not seem to be in step with desire
for open government - a conflict here? There are procedures to
make open discussion more clear in terms of who is in charge of making decisions about complaints, for example.
Week of May 10-14 Finance Board - not.
Building Committee (special) Wednesday May 12, 2021, 7:30pm
D.E.I. Advisory Committee, Monday May 10, 2021 at 7:30pm on
Zoom...Finance and Education chairpersons present as were 3 members of
the LWV Steering Committee, TEAM Weston, 2nd Selectman (who semi-recused
--gave only basic process info--) plus complainant on Police call in
2019 - lasted until @8:30pm.
Week of May 3-7 SPECIAL BOARD OF POLICE COMMiSSIONERS May 6, 2021 - 7pm until after 10pm, more than 400 on call. Board of Finance Special meeting Thursday May 6, 2021 at 6pm, agenda posted. Set mill rate at 32.97
Selectmen Thursday May 6, 2021at 7:30pm, changed to 5pm. Crazy
planning started this trifecta...Lachat sent to Conservation and P&Z
- 2-1 vote to do it...
Special D.E.I. May 6, 2021 at 6:30pm - it disappeared - no meeting.
Special Board of Finance May 6, 2021 at 6pm - set mill rate 32.97.
Special Board of Selectmen, May 6, 2021 at 5pm...Lachat improvements to Conservation, then P&Z for 8-24.
SPECIAL BUILDING COMMITTEE May 5, 2021at 7:30pm on Zoom - pass code 06883, https://us02web.zoom.us/j/89973910245#success
Police Commission Tuesday May 4, 2021 at 7pm - link here. CALL FLOODED, NO MEETING, WILL RESCHEDULE.
D.E.I. Advisory Committee 7pm Monday May 3rd at 7pm - 9pm and raw and
real comments by various social groups of all manners of true angst in
Weston revealed. Planning & Zoning Special Meeting at 2pm Monday May 3 via Zoom - site development plan for one lot on Byebrook (Michael's Way).Approved.
Week of April 26-30 to May 1 REFERENDUM - May 1, 2021, 12 noon to
8pm at Town Hall - 5% or 318 voters participated. All three items
passed, lowest vote on school budget, highest on Capital Budget.
D.E.I. Advisory Committee Monday April 26, 2021 at 7:30pm. Special P&Z Monday April
26, 2021 at 10am on Zoom ran until 11:30am. Among other news,
P&Z in process of documenting the number of apartment permits ever
granted while P&Z has been handling this part of the Zoning Regs
(and we assume all backup data regarding how the process has changed
over the years as well as other info on size and procedures).
Week of April 19-24
WAS THERE A QUORUM FOR ATBM? No. Referendum continues Saturday May 1, 2021, 12 noon to 8pm at Town Hall.
Link to summary here
of BOF on FY22 budget - on to April 24 (Saturday at 2pm) - ATBM LIVE
W.H.S. FOOTBALL FIELD - new people must come to see the process!!!
ATBM Saturday April 24, 2021 at 2pm at Weston High
School football field, on Zoom or not? Quorum of 130 eligible voters
present required to hold the meeting prior to Referendum - May 6 and 18
at 7:30pm Finance Board alternative dates/time for setting mill rate. Conservation Commission Thursday April 22, 2021 on Zoom...3 acceptance
of new applications plus discussion of revised application form
modifying the number of plan copies and rewording items.
Board of Selectmen Thursday April 22 at 7:30pm on Zoom/canceled
Economic Vitality Committee Wednesday April 21, 2021 at 7pm on Zoom - gaining focus!!!
Commission for the Arts Tuesday April 20, 2021 at 7:30pm on Zoom -
Earth Day (a few days early) event at Grange co-sponsored with
WestonArts a big success. Plans for "Movie Under The Stars September 4th ongoing.
Facilities Optimization Committee, Tuesday April 20, 2021, at 7pm on Zoom/canceled. P&Z Affordable Housing Workshop, Monday April 19, 2021,7:30pm on Zoom - send ideas to: email@example.com
Tri-Board meeting Monday Monday April 19, 2021 at 6pm on Zoom (BOS, BOE, Finance)
Week of April 12-16 (Special) Building Committee Wednesday April 14, 2021 at 7:30pm. Did not take place - canceled at the last minute Facilities Optimization Committee (Special) Tuesday April 13, 2021 at 7pm on Zoom - narrowed field to two firms from four - checking references, etc. prior to making recommendation to Selectmen.
D.E.I. ADVISORY COMMITTEE April 12, 2021
(Monday). Excellent meeting with a quorum present - limit to
what they can do - seeking new members. Second Selectman present and 2 members of the general public.
Week of April 5-9 SPECIAL BOARD OF FINANCE 6pm April 8th - canceled Economic Vitality special Meeting 6pm Wednesday April 7th - we signed on late but caught the drift! Read more here.
Board of Police Commissioners April 6th at 7pm Tuesday - we stayed with
the Board of Finance/did not attend. Our apologies.
Board of Finance Deliberation on FY22 budget Tuesday April 6, 2021, in
the first hour, provided for a way to lower the BOE FY22 request...more
Facilities Optimization Committee interviews 1, 2 & 3 pm Tuesday April 6, 2021
P&Z Monday April 5,
2021 at 7:15p, on Zoom - discussion with author of proposed floating
zone/special permit for 4-corners. Lots of folks tuned in!
Week of March 29 to April 2 Board of Selectmen Thursday April 1, 2021 at 7:30pm - resignations and appointments first. Then
discussion of "re-opening plans" Announcement of plan for ATBM live at
the football field April 24 (Saturday at 2pm). Rain dates the following
Board of Finance Public Hearing on FY22 budget Wednesday March 31, 2021 7pm (second night)/canceled Lachat
news at 6pm-9pm open meeting Wednesday March 31, 2021 - bravo Lachat
Town Farm Commission for clear definition of proposal - concern
town-wide that it is maybe too much development for the farm
Board of Finance Public Hearing on FY22 budget Tuesday March 30, 2021 7pm
Diversity Committee ("DEI") meeting Monday March 29, 2021 discusses ways
to knit the concept of diversity into various practices of major Town
boards and commissions.
Week of March 22-26 Conservation Commission March 25, 2021 at 7:30pm - CT House finished early so we were able to see Conservation handle 4 applications.
Economic Vitality Commission March 24, 2021 at 7pm/canceled
Building Committee (Special) at 7:30pm - big agenda! Meeting lasted almost 3 hours...summary of what happened.
Facilities Optimization Committee (Special) March 24, 2021 at 2pm -
first interview, we think, of 4 finalists. Question:
How will be be assured that no one else was watching who will be
interviewed? Answer: We think that all 17 persons on the
Zoom can be accounted for...WE TOOK NOTES BUT DO NOT PUBLISH THEM BECAUSE PROCESS MUST BE PURE
Commission for the Arts (Special) March 23, 2021 at 7:30pm - "April 17th, noon to 4pm - "Arts and the Earth" at the Grange!
Week of March 15-19
Board of Selectmen Thursday March 18, 2021 at 7:30pm - over by 8:30pm. Check new dates for ATBM and Machine Vote here. FOC Tuesday March 16, 2021 7pm-7:58pm - 4 consultants selected from 8 to be interviewed.
P&Z Special Meeting Monday 2-15-21 10am-11:30am approx. - survey to go out soon! We think it is here: https://www.westonct.gov/home/showpublisheddocument?id=4801
Week of March 8-12 Board of Finance at 6pm Thursday March 11, 2021 - 2nd night of Selectmen/canceled Board of Finance at 6pm Wednesday March 10, 2021 - Selectmen's Budget review Board of Finance at 6pm Tuesday March 9, 2021, 2nd night of BOE budget review/canceled Board of Finance Monday March 8, 2021 at 6pm (Education Budget) 6pm (we left after a few hours).
P&Z Monday March 8, 2021 at 10am (special) - on Village District and Affordable Housing with M&M.
Week of March 1-5
Police Commission Tuesday March 2, 2021 7pm - lasted less than half an
hour before executive session. C.O. on Thursday, hopefully.
Allowing newly renovated spake to be occupied (i.e. cell blocks new)
P&Z Monday March 1, 2021 at 7:15pm (only one hour!) - Special
Meeting set for 10am Monday March 8, 2021 on affordable Housing &
Village District with M&M. Zone change proposed for 4 corners
area - the "Gateway" to Weston.
BOARD OF SELECTMEN, Monday March 1, 2021 at 10am hires new
Communications Center Director (after retirement by predecessor) .
FEBRUARY MEETINGS TO BE ATTENDED BY LWV OF WESTON OBSERVER CORPS:
Week of February 22-26
Budget Process begins in earnest,,,
Board of Selectmen Tuesday February 23rd at 7:30pm - review First Selectman's Budget
Board of Selectmen Thursday February 25th at 7:30pm - "reviews" both
Selectmen and Education budgets - is this a misnomer re: First
Selectman's budget (they vote on it)?
Week of February 15-19 Economic Vitality Committee Friday Feb. 19th special meeting at 7pm
finalized shorter-term and longer term goals and recommended options for
the Board of Selectmen.
Board of Selectmen Thursday Feb. 17th
Economic Vitality Committee Tuesday Feb. 15 - we caught the beginning -
the draft for the Board of Selectmen was reviewed (we had the first
draft, so we left);
Week of February 8-12 - Plus Saturday - "Speak Up" (click) was Saturday
Feb. 13. 30th annual Weston LWV event! It ran over by 30
Economic Vitality Comm. Wednesday Feb. 10, 2021 at 7pm on Zoom;
Special P&Z Wednesday February 10, 2021 at 11 am on Zoom: Agenda -
Process for the preparation of Affordable Housing Plan with Mike Zuba and Rebecca Augur of SLR Corporation (Milone & MacBroom, Inc. has merged with SLR Corporation)
Process for the preparation of Village Center District
Regulations with Mike Zuba and Rebecca Augur of SLR Corporation
Week of February 1 - 5
Board of Selectmen Thursday Feb. 4 at 7:30pm on Zoom
Police Commission met Tuesday Feb. 2 - into the budget process, officers
out, some COVID. Current budget under pressure. Chief and Chair.
to attend "Speak Up"
DECEMBER MEETINGS TO BE ATTENDED BY LWV OF WESTON OBSERVER CORPS:
Week of Dec. 14-18 Board of Selectmen met Thursday December 17, 2020 at 7:30pm on Zoom Funding for COVID expenses to come in from CT - an additional $57
thousand plus; Governor continues 90 deferral on qualified homeowners
taxes. OK on sending out RFP for Facilities Optimization Committee consultant.
EVC ("Economic Vitality Committee") Dec. 16th, meets as full board of five (5),
discusses how they will approach their charge and where they should look
for other entities work in the "silos" or parts of the
'vitality' space...and decide on vision for short, medium and longer term actions.
P&Z Special Tuesday Dec. 15, 2020 approves MMI to do Affordable Housing Study.
Week of Dec. 7-11 Board of Finance 12-10-20 - keeping tabs on tax payment as they come
in! And juggling possible methods of funding Town needs as 2001
bonds expire - in order to keep a flat mill rate.
Building Committee 12-9-20 - chugging along!
P&Z 12-7-20 rejected apartment regulation petition, discussed next
steps in affordable housing study, I believe established meeting schedule for 2021 and discussed village district.
Week of November 30-December 5 (Saturday) P&Z Public Hearing on Apartment Regulation, December 5, 2020,
Saturday morning at 10:30am, on Zoom - note conflict with First
Selectman at Kiwanis! Board of Selectmen Thursday Dec. 3, 2020 at
7:30pm on Zoom...really big agenda and e-mail us for the 7-step secret
way to be sure to get to Zoom Selectmen. Facilities Optimization Committee Tuesday December 1, 2020 at 7pm on Zoom - please note conflict with Police Commission... With
a quorum present including a member of the Board of Selectmen,
school staff and several members of the public), plans were set in
motion to bring forth a proposed RFP for action in the new
year. This meeting was all about reviewing second draft of that
potential RFP for consultant on future capital need. When Weston
can return to the table for bonding...next step in
development for future schools is a point of emphasis! Another
meeting needed hopefully in December to finalize proposal prior to
approval from Board of Selectmen - and after, special meeting of Board
of Finance if request exceeds $5000. All parts of Weston
government's needs to be addressed (especially
checking the box to confirm what has been done already - i.e. Police
Department, EMS/Fire Department and Town Hall itself). Future
concerns (i.e. school bus garage, Town Hall Annex, the future
composition the the education capital plant and others named in new Town
Plan were discussed.
NOVEMBER MEETINGS TO BE ATTENDED BY LWV OF WESTON OBSERVER CORPS: Week of November 23-27 Diversity Committee Monday November 23, 2020, 7:30-8:30pm (see below). THE ONLY GAME IN TOWN - MONDAY NOV. 23, 2020, 7:30-8:30pm, ON ZOOM: Awesome Committee - got thru entire agenda in allotted time - with
understanding that the Selectmen had something specific in mind (2nd
Selectman present). FOI rules re: Subcommittees not required to post
notice or agenda or minutes. The work to be done will be by
Sub-Committee, assuming any recommendations must come back to full
Committee (which was pointed out to them as including posting notices,
minutes and reading Robert's Rules).
Week of November 16-20 Board of Selectmen 2 meetings Thursday Nov. 19, 2020 at 7pm and 7:30pm:
- 1st one - PH for Property Tax Abatement modification for Fire/EMS Public Hearing held.
- 2nd one - Sidewalks PH, 12 comments, approved unanimously to send to HDC
and 8-24 by P&Z; Vote to OK property tax abatement changes
subject to Town Att'y (2-0)
- Also 2nd - Lachet rental discussion, receipt of STEAP grant for storage of
records for town after giving storage newly in place to Police, minutes
approved (4 sets).
FOC Tuesday Nov. 17, 2020 at 7pm - draft to be modified (for RFP which will have to go to Selectmen).
Week of November 9-13 Board of Finance Thursday November 12, 2020 at 6pm - now a "special"
concluded that it will be necessary to have another Tri-board meeting, we think, soon. Tri-Board meeting Tuesday November 10, 2020, 6pm. Very revealing, see follow up above.
Week of November 2-6:
Board of Selectmen Thursday Nov. 5, 2020, 7:30pm - Dates set for two
Public Hearings - Nov. 19, 2020 at 7pm (Ordinance changes for EMS/Fire
property tax abatement) and 7:30pm, Sidewalks. Board of Police Commissioners, Wednesday Nov. 4, 2020 7pm to 8:10pm. Lots of hot stuff.
P&Z Monday Nov. 2, 2020 at 7:15pm - REMINDER OF PUBLIC HEARING DEC.
5, 2020 TO AMEND APARTMENT REGULATION TO PERMIT ANOTHER SIZE
INCREASE...and discussion of implementation 3-step process to achieve
ultimate goals from new Town Plan.
OCTOBER MEETINGS ATTENDED BY LWV OF WESTON OBSERVER CORPS:
Week of Oct. 26-30:
Building Committee (Special) Wednesday Oct. 28, 2020 at 7:30pm. Approved change orders, selected consultant for old gym at WHS.
Special Selectmen/Finance, Tuesday October 27, 2020 at 6pm.
To discuss real estate transaction. Executive Session began at 6:03pm.
Facilities Optimization Committee met for interviews: We observed Tues. Oct. 27 at 3pm and then 4pm;
Week of Oct. 19-23:
Week of Oct. 13-16 (Columbus Day Monday):
Building Committee, Selectmen (plus Public Hearing on deer hunt);
Week of Oct. 5-9:
Selectmen (2 - one Special), P&Z, Police
Commission, Historic District Commission, Board of Finance (Special)
C.G.A.(SENATE) SPECIAL SESSION DAY TWO Oct. 1, 2020; DAY ONE OF SPECIAL HOUSE SESSION
C.G.A. (HOUSE) DAY ONE OF SPECIAL SESSION Sept. 30, 2020
Zoning Board of Appeals September 29, 2020 - Public Hearing on side line
variances for non-conforming lot on Georgetown Road - denied, 5-0.
Selectmen Public Hearings Thursday August 6, 2020 (Local Transportation Capital
Improvement Program 6:15pm) and a second (start/stop construction times -
6:45pm). And finishing up with aSpecial Town Meeting Davis Hill Road Bridge conveyance of property at 7pm.
SPECIAL P&Z Monday July 27, 2020 at 7:15pm via ZOOM - no agenda yet posted.
Conservation Commission Thursday July 23, 2020 at 7:30pm - Senate
Selectmen Special Board of Selectmen Wednesday 7:30pm t6p 8:45pm...
SPECIAL BUILDING COMMITTEE Monday July 13, 2020 at 7:30pm - agenda.
This may not have been posted on the Town website 24 hrs. in advance -
we're pretty sure of that - but in any event will try to find out what
happened for sure once minutes are
posted. And we would note for the record that the Building Committee is the best entity (we give them an "A+++") for posting both minutes and video recording.
"SPECIAL" BOARD OF FINANCE (time changed) THURSDAY JULY 9, 2020 at 6PM via ZOOM: "play-by-play"
Building Committee Wednesday July 8, 2020 at 7:30pm - nope. First Selectman posted a message on the Town website indicating how Town Hall project is proceeding.
Planning & Zoning Saturday June 6th Public Hearing on 2020 POCD - We did not attend but got 2 reports,
both from the most reliable sources (not from P&Z or
Selectmen). Virtual attendance slight but vocal on various issues
(traffic, sustainability, water testing, Town Center, affordable housing).
like to watch public meetings "live" from the beginning, and the
Finance Board went on 'til 8pm - I watched the Board of Selectmen
Thursday June 4, 2020 meeting as a re-run - "play-by-play."
Board of Finance Thursday June 4, 2020 6pm - 8pm
Zoom brought "zero" to budget BUT deliberation was split 4-3 (not on
Party lines). How much of the General Fund should be tapped to
arrive at zero was the issue. Mill Rate 32.37. NOTE:
This meeting had been intended to be held on June 2nd, but there were
"technical difficulties" that prevented participation by both members
and the public. Special Building Committee Wednesday June 3, 2020 at 7:30pm - "play-by-play"
Facility Optimization Committee Tuesday June 2, 2020 via Google Meet - agenda.
Police Commission Tuesday June 2, 2020 at 7pm via ZOOM - http://www.westonct.gov/media/file/TuesdayJune22020Agenda.pdf
Planning & Zoning Monday June 1, 2020 at 7:15 - agenda posted. We
will be "going to" the Board of Finance (above). Instead, when
available, we will refer to the excellent P&Z minutes to find out
Wednesday May 13, 2020 at 1:30pm - plans to be received in a week or
two (3 bids), decision to be made, and then OK on choice sought from
Selectmen to proceed with fund raising.
Background, how we decide what to attend and
links: Note that if the content of the meeting agenda warrants. we
may change from our hierarchy.
COVID-19 has changed the protocols for public meetings in CT - everything in Weston now "Virtual" using various tools. So we report on everything related to our usual favorites - plus,
now Conservation has been added to complement P&Z! It is the
sixth entity we cover as a matter of course.
5 BOARDS/COMMISSIONS/COMMITTEES ON OUR RADAR - WE'RE THERE TO REPORT.* Norwalk HOUR is Weston's newspaper of record - and now for W.H.S. sports! We will read the sports news and report!!! AT RIGHT, LINK TO ALL CT LEGISLATORS.
WHY READ US FIRST?
About Town tells the story with pictures/captions THAT VERY
NIGHT OR A.S.A.P.
#1 - Board of Selectmen Woody Bliss, Gayle Weinstein, Nina Daniel and now Chris Spaulding the
First Selectmen represented in About Weston website reports.
Previously, George Guidera (1987-1999) was First Selectman (we have been
following the meetings of the Weston Board of Selectmen - every meeting
but one - since mid-1991). If you want to know what happened since
November 16, 2001, our reports are online here (see
links at the bottom of the page); from 1991 until 2001 we did not
have an "About Weston" website (Hal Shupack, 1999-2001, thus not
represented online here either).
And the revered editor/publisher covered the Board of Selectmen,
many thought, directing them from the last row in the Town Hall Meeting
Room!!! In fact, when she sold her newspaper to Acorn Press, the
18 yr Town Administrator put in his resignation shortly thereafter.
Reelected, the Board of Selectmen meets Friday Nov. 8, 2019
Video by Weston Today edits a capella young Weston voices singing Star Spangled Banner at Swearing In Ceremony later in the afternoon.
My question is what are we teaching the children by playing the system? Answer: Protesting authority works.
2018 A.T.B.M.: NO QUORUM PRESENT. CROWD OF 105 HIGHER THAN LAST YEAR (92) BUT STILL SHORT OF THE QUORUM OF 130. Too bad we didn't have a quorum (there actually were people there -
this picture taken to emphasize empty chairs) - I think someone is
missing up front???
FIRST SPEAK UP ON ZOOM A BRINGS OUT AN EVEN BIGGER CROWD!!!
Stunning success - went on for 2 hours, but one topic was missed (at least) - what's up at Lachat?
We counted more than a dozen questions and we had to skip out with ten minutes to go.
@150 people on the Zoom (thank you Town of Weston) plus 30
officials and moderator. Better turnout than when live.
It seemed that everybody enjoyed it!!!
SPEAK-UP 2020 AWESOME SUCCESS - NOT A SECRET THIS YEAR!!!
"SPEAK UP 2020" - the 29th consecutive such event - IS OVER...
This Speak Up 2020 seemed to be different in a number of ways. HIGHLIGHTS:
Folks wanted to take their own snapshots and get out information to their friends and neighbors A.S.A.P.
A distinct up-tick in school parents. Who listened intently. Some took notes.
Awesome questions about traffic, intersections and how these relate to school start times...
All these years later, traffic seemed still to be one of the big issues -
particular intersections. Schools, budget and
regionalization brought up.
And in the audience were Town employees who had the answers for "when will Valley Forge Road reopen?"
As well as any questions about property transfers, date of election
activity for Presidential Primary or dog licenses or almost anything
else you want to know.
AND THE FIRST QUESTION WENT TO...P&Z - WHAT NEXT? (Ans. April 4th Town Plan Public Hearing, W.M.S. Library 7:30pm)
Planning & Zoning got another later...someone asked about Cobb's Mill Inn.
TAXES AND WHITHER THE STATE OF CONNECTICUT?
SOMEONE WONDERING ABOUT TAX BASE?
Taxes got interest both from the audience as well as in lots of
interchange among those on stage wanting to chip in and amplify answers.
SIDEWALKS? What kind and where?
TRAFFIC, INTERSECTIONS AND SUSTAINABILITY
More that I can recall...questions always seem to pick up intensity toward the end...
NO ONE GOT MORE QUESTIONS THAN THE POLICE (AS TRAFFIC OFFICERS FOR THE TOWN).
Environmental issues, sustainability (in picture above) very much to the fore as well.
In short, everyone wanted to have these conversations...
Topics were addressed in this order:
Increasing State grabbing money - decrease in aid ("claw back")
School Start Times
Intersection: Norfield & Rte. 57 signage and turning???
Can we bring more businesses to Fairfield County?
Intersections: Local streets Steep Hill & Good Hill; Broad St. & Cavalry Rd.
What is happening if anything with Cobb's Mill Inn?
of services: Regional Dispatch? Combining finance
departments? School-Town buildings and grounds maintenance?
What can we do to attract people to move here? Emphasis on Sustainability?
Eliminate State income tax in order to attract people/businesses?
Wells - water as a public trust so why can't the Legislature trust the Towns to hold stronger standards to protect wells?
FOR THE ANSWER TO THESE MATTERS AND MUCH MORE, WESTON LWV EXPECTS TO HAVE VIDEO UP BY MIDWEEK
"SPEAK UP": When we arrived to set up video cameras the
Library was closed...90 minutes later it was standing room only!!!
The full Legislative Delegation showed up and was very helpful in
fielding budget, taxes and direction issues.
REGIONAL SCHOOL SYSTEM? CT PASSING RETIREMENT OBLIGATIONS FOR TEACHERS TO THE TOWNS?
Town Plan, regionalization, traffic, coyotes, the first 4
questions. Then it started...how the heck do we deal with school
budget when the Grand List is shrinking? School
system managing on multiple fronts? Can we stay afloat?
There is a technical tipping point between property values and mil rates
(i.e. the lower the mil rate and higher the property value)...
Unofficial questions ("answers" on the video now available) click above.
The event began with first question on Town Plan "what's up?"
Next was "Sustainability: What's up?"
then the Board of Finance Chair. asked the Legislators sitting next to
him on the stage what we should be looking out for in the upcoming
Session, which begins next week.
Fourth question was from opposed to the dog park regarding traffic safety which the Police Commission will deal with if asked.
Back to State matters for question five.
National tax reform entered the discussion as question six.
Seven was "did you check out the record of the solar
farm company?" Which got answers from two folks so we counted it
as two questions.
Number 8 was a
searching one about what the Town knew about the company in charge of
the virtual net metering arrangement we had just formalized.
Question 9 was a statement about the value of animals in formal and informal settings.
Question 10 was engagement with the subject of special needs children in educational settings...
as was question 11.
Next must have been related to the procedures to be followed re: Dog Park application (to just be received with
no comments on substance of the 8-24). Which prompted more
discussion onstage about the 8-24 process and Special Town Meeting
necessity if a "positive" 8-24 is given.
Perhaps there was another question re: Dog Park.
Back to the Town Plan for #14
And then a final (#15) question about need for new and/or more C.G.A. legislation against pesticides.
Speak Up 2018 is over.
see how things go this year - during the Budget Process and the various
other activities of government as relates to what items were hot at Speak Up...
About Town's version of how Weston CT was saved 21st century-style. The threat to Weston is now Hartford.
The Weston FORUM originally came into being I
think to shine a light on local political machinations - especially
regarding which of its vacant land got gobbled up.
The original FORUM went to every house for free.
Every major Board and Commission had a reporter to follow it - P&Z was "front page news" then.
When Acorn Press took over the FORUM* (early 1990's) it began to look like every other local paper...Acorn Press merged with Hersam (New Canaan) outlets...
Ultimately the "Weston FORUM" in name only - regionalized with Redding and Easton ("Aspetuck News")...which is when...
"Weston-Today" was born. Weston needed a "hometown" voice** - and that meant having its own newspaper by and for Westonites.
* Some might not remember
the FORUM front page fight referred to in #1 above: "Access to
Town owned parks...for all." However, the most valued commodity in
Weston is privacy...
**Legal action might not have been the most
efficient tool, or "voice," but starting a rival newspaper @1990 to drive out
the FORUM as a hometown newspaper did the trick.